Nixiesocean: Yay! I finally got FF.N to put up a Kate Constable section… woot! Well, no need for me to keep ya from the story, albeit a shaky one, lol!

Chapter 5: Trout's Dram II

Trout looked across the waters through the looking glass he had created. There, a large ship with a smaller ship lashed to it, sailed at a high speed. If they slowed up, they could miss it… at the bow of the other ship, two tall figures looked across the sea, much like he was from the crow's nest. The ship was close now, almost to them.

"Tonno!" He called, but the captain had already slowed at seeing the larger ship. He looked back to the ship. He now could clearly make out the name: Gold Arrow. Sounds like… Trout was shaken out of his thoughts by a voice he knew well, Darrow's.

"Trout!" Darrow called. He turned to the man next to him and Darrow retreated into the cabin. The other man, who looked like Darrow, hailed Tonno.

"Hail!" He called.

"Hail!" Tonno yelled back.

"Come aboard!" The captain of Gold Arrow said. "We'll talk over lunch!" The crew easily boarded the ship, Tonno first and Halasaa last.

Trout kept his head down, as he often did after… then. He couldn't think of it, lest everyone see his tears. The captain introduced himself as Joran, Darrow's father. Though he called him Eron, not Darrow…

"Come along, well dine in my quarters. It may be cramped, but the food is worth it." He winked. Trout counted the grains of wood in the deck while Captain Joran led them to the captain's quarters.


Sister! Halasaa greeted. How is your child? Calwyn felt herself blush. Did every Tree Person know she was pregnant? Halasaa's voice came back to her very sad. Do not let Trout sleep normally. You'll need to put him in a trance of Seeming. He's… he's been having certain dreams- about Mica.

A pang in her heart made her draw away from the table. What types?

He goes to a dream place much like the sacred Knot of the Waters. Halasaa informed her.

What does he see there? Calwyn requested of her brother.

I do not know. I left before it started. He says Mica is alive. Halasaa said. He felt his sister fend off tears at the mention of her old friend.

She cannot be, Halasaa. I saw no spark in her, I would know. I tried to heal her. Calwyn said reasonably.

Maybe some force drives Mica back into Trout's dreams along with our world?

Halasaa, you know as well as I the impossibility of such an occurrence.


Trout lay curled up in a corner of the Captain's quarters. He tried to make himself invisible against the wooden walls. Calwyn came to him, her mouth moved. He smiled to himself. They'd forgotten his deafness. He nodded into sleep, merely from lack of true sleep. He smiled as he left the realm of reality, he would see Mica again.

He stood on the banks of the familiar scene. The river trickled and hummed. The sky never lost its unending blueness. He looked around. "Mica?" He called into the air. He felt a blast of cold, deathly cold, air next to him. There, he saw her with her mop of hair and golden eyes.

"You called, Trout?" She asked. The voice that spoke was not Mica's. It didn't have her accent or her playfulness.

"Mica…" He reached out a ghostly hand to touch her cheek. She reached out a hand to clasp his. When he touched it, it was cold. Yet, warmer than the last time they had met. Unconsciously, he took her into an embrace, tears of happiness flowing down his cheeks. He felt cold seep right into his bones, but Trout didn't care. Here he was, holding in his arms the one thing he had lost. Along with her, he had lost part of himself.

Her golden eyes met his eyes. He leaned down and kissed her warming lips. She responded to the kiss in kind. When they released the kiss, he saw her gently fading in and out of his arms.

"Mica!" He said as she backed away. She was fading into nothing. "Don't leave me again!"

"Trout," Her not-Mica voice said. "Meet me under the Blazetree in Antaris. I'll meet you there!" He ran up to hold her again, but by the time he reached where she had stood, Mica's form was gone. Her voice echoes eerily off the too-green hills.

"Meet me under the Blazetree in Antaris, I'll meet you there!"

"Mica!" He screamed into the scene that never changed. Finally, he himself was being wrenched out of this dream world.

"Trout!" Calwyn's voice said to him. "Wake up, Trout!" His eyes opened automatically.

"Calwyn?" He asked groggily.

"Trout, you can't go to sleep. Please!" She pleaded. He wanted to respond 'You wouldn't know why I sleep. I see Mica.' "Let me heal your ear."

"No." he said. This was the only way he had survived from Samis. This was how Seeming and the Power of Ice didn't affect him. "I want too keep it this way."

"Trout," She said warningly. She reached out a hand to start the Dance of Becoming. "Let me-"

His eyes flashed angrily. "When I say 'no' I mean 'no', Calwyn." He shoved her hand away and rolled onto his half-deaf ear.

"Fine. I was just trying to help." She whispered. "After all, you're not the only one that misses Mica." His heart, for the first time in ages, didn't ache when she said her name. In fact, it soared.


"Tonno, he needs to stay." Calwyn said. "I need to keep an eye or both on him."

"I'm sorry, Calwyn. He's the one that drug me from Emeron, so he has to stay with me." Tonno replied. "We need to keep on our course." He moved around Calwyn to go get Trout.

"Where are you headed?" The Tree Person/Voiced One asked.

"Antaris. He wants to see her grave." Tonno replied going over to Trout. "Hey, wake up. We're leaving."

Trout's eyes fluttered open. "Antaris, the Blazetree, Tonno. That's where we need to go."

"The Blazetree?" Calwyn screeched. "The most sacred place in all of Antaris? There is no way the sisters will let you near the Sacred Valley!"

"I think they will," Trout said sourly. "Calwyn. I hope you and your lover have a good time." He walked out, leaving Calwyn gaping at Tonno.

"You're actually going to take him there?" She asked, incredulous.

"Yes, Calwyn. I am. I know the importance of her to him. He lost part of himself with her." Tonno said. Was he getting soft because of Keela?

"In any case, you can't get him into the Sacred Valley. There'll be no way the sisters will let him." Calwyn reasoned.

"If I remember correctly, Calwyn, we also said there was no cure for the Chanter Sickness. Yet, here you and Darrow are, alive and with Chantment." With that last reminder, Tonno turned around and walked to his boat to cast off the larger Gold Arrow.